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Activities To Do With Your Child This Holiday Season!

It's that time of the year where many schools across the globe are off for the Christmas holidays! Stuck for some fun yet educational activities to keep your child occupied?
Here's some inspiration...

Just because it's the school holidays does not mean that your child has to stop learning! Here's how...

                       1) 'If I had one Christmas wish for the world, it would be...' 💫

A festive take on our Debate Mate classic, 'If I ruled the world...'! This activity is so simple, yet so effective at encouraging children to develop and justify their opinions!

1) Imagine that you've been granted one Christmas wish- what would it be?
2) Encourage your child to get as creative with it as possible and fully justify their answer. Keep on pushing them to explain further.
3) Why not get the whole family involved around the dinner table!

                                    2) Where do you stand? (Christmas edition) 🤔

This game is another Debate Mate staple and a favourite of our students! Simply pose a statement to your child and count down from 5. They should then put their thumbs up if they agree, down if they disagree or somewhere in the middle if they're unsure. Next, ask them to explain their opinion clearly to fully justify their stance. You can even turn it into a mini-debate with other members of the family!

Here's some festive suggestions for statements to discuss:

  • Children on the naughty list should not get presents from Santa!
  • Christmas music should not be played before December.
  • All Christmas trees should be artificial.
  • Christmas has become too commercialised.
  • Christmas is about giving rather than receiving.
  • Mince pies are the best Christmas snack.

Challenge: Once your child has decided where they stand on a statement, challenge them to instead argue for the opposing side! Putting yourself in the opposition's shoes is a great debating strategy and a brilliant way to develop empathy in young people.

                                                      3) Santa's Sleigh Debate🎅🏼

Get the whole family involved in this festive take on our infamous Balloon Debate! To begin, get everyone to write down their ideal Christmas gift- it could be anything, get as creative and extravagant as possible! Next, it's time to set the scene...

Imagine it's Christmas Eve, and Santa is on his way to drop off presents to all the children of the world. Everyone's ideal gift is sat in his sleigh, ready to be delivered to the stocking at the bottom of their beds. Suddenly, Santa gets caught in a snow storm and his sleigh, weighed down with presents, starts to lose height! To relieve some of the weight on his sleigh, Santa sadly needs to discard some of the presents.

ROUND 1) Your job, is to take it in turns to deliver a 1 minute speech persuading the group exactly why your gift shouldn't be thrown out of his sleigh. Everyone must then vote on the most persuasive speech, those with the least votes are out and their presents must be discarded!
ROUND 2) After everyone's given this initial pitch, it's time to go around the remaining contestants. This time, everyone must explain not only why their gift should be kept aboard Santa's sleigh, but also why the other presents deserve to be thrown out! After everyone's spoken, it's time for another vote. Those with the least votes must be voted out, leaving just 2 speakers to battle it out in the final round.
ROUND 3) The remaining contestants must now give their final plea. Everyone then must vote on who has convinced them the most overall and their present is saved!

                                                          4) 'Merry Christmas!' 🎄

The final activity is a take on a Debate Mate staple, 'I Can't Believe It!' This game is designed to develop speaker style and persuasive speaking techniques in young people. 

To begin, everyone should brainstorm as many emotions as possible. Here's some ideas to get you started:

  • Happy
  • Sad
  • Angry
  • Excited
  • Disappointed
  • Nervous

1) Write these down and cut them out, then fold each piece of paper in half and mix them all up in a hat.
2) Everyone playing must then take it in turns to pick out a piece of paper and say 'Merry Christmas' in the style of that emotion! Make sure you're using your whole body and voice to convey this- try using hand gestures, intonation, pausing and facial expressions.
3) Everyone must then guess which emotion you've picked out based on the way you've delivered 'Merry Christmas!'

💬 Want your child to continue developing key future skills through fun activities like these? Sign them up to a FREE 30-minute taster session running in the new year by clicking here!